Queen for an Episode: The Real Housewives of New Jersey – S08E02


Somewhere in Orange County, finally, Sarah Winchester is vindicated.

As promised, before we dive into the rankings, The Staub Report. Friends, I am happy to say we are in an era of a lighter Danielle. A softer Danielle. A Danielle who would take a child with cancer and coddle them to her breast, rather than storm their benefit with a posse of Hell’s Angels and call Chris Manzo a faggot. I don’t know if I’m here for Santa Daniella as a permanent fixture — I’m too married to the histrionic queen of old — but let’s give the woman some time to settle in and luxuriate in her newfound good edit. If she turns up next week ladling out bisque with Danny Provenzano at the soup kitchen, I’m not mad.

And the rest?

5. Dolores: Has committed a real unforced error backing Siggy up in this argument. If you’re an uninteresting beta on your own merits, the least you can do is hitch your cart to the right horse. Her tagline about loyalty is starting to look like a preemptive apology.

4. Melissa: Supporting cast, but on the right side.

3. Teresa: That burn about the crab cake was a beautiful stroke of petty genius; mazel tov.

2. Siggy: Siggy! What the fuck, girl?! I am in awe of Siggy’s ep two showing, which surely has to be one of the most disastrous single-episode performances by any Housewife ever. Heather Dubrow would watch Siggy in this episode and be like ‘k little much sweetheart it’s just a cake.’ Siggy’s behaviour in this episode was so bizarre and ill-advised and frankly delusional that I have to wonder how much of it was on the level. The cynic in me says that the Jersey girls got a warning to step up the drama or face the axe, and Siggy is taking the bullet for the group. I can’t really rationalize her mindset any other way, besides maybe a severe psychotic episode.

That said? The cake incident was the first piece of new, not-from-five-years-ago drama we’ve gotten on RHONJ in what feels like decades. I was exhausted by the end of it, but as long as it doesn’t turn into a nineteen-episode-long Beverly Hills conflict, I’ll tip my hat to Siggy Soggy for bringing the heat.

1. Margaret: So we got a little taste of Margaret in the premiere but we didn’t really meet her until this episode, and it was very interesting. First of all, there is no way in Hell her turn on Siggy wasn’t premeditated. She was too well-prepared. I think this is the classic case of someone getting brought onto the show by someone they barely know and then instantly turning on them to kindle favour with the real stars (e.g., any time someone came on via Alexis Bellino). I think the memorial wreath was a very sweet gesture, but also very much intended as a suck-up move to Teresa and her posse. It also had the unintended (but desirable!) effect of making Siggy and her cake whining look even more petty and deranged.

I’m interested to see where Margaret goes from here, because she’s done a lot of legwork very quickly. Two episodes deep, and she’s already in with Teresa, has a marquee feud where she’s on the right side of public opinion, and seems to be picking up some decent fan support as far as I can tell. Let’s see what she does with a whole season.

Next week on The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Siggy has to be restrained by medical professionals after a guest fails to use a coaster.

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